March 10, 2008

Loss of the history - tribute to Namdaemun Gate

About a month ago I was deeply saddened by the news of the fire that destroyed Namdaemun. My heart was crying together with other millions of Koreans' for the loss of such a historical and valueable site. For those who doesn't know, Namdaemun was the historical gate located in the center of Seoul, the site that survived many wars and it was the #1 tourist attraction in South Korea. It was always on the top of my list to sit in front of this historical and well-preserved gate and listen to stories and podcasts about Korean history and to get lost in thoughts... It was mostly built from wood, and now it is lost. Koreans will build exactly the same structure in its place, but it will never be the same without its history. It's like building another set of Giza pyramids in Egypt using today's modern technology, but who will buy it?!

Namdaemun burning and collapsing (Reuters);



More photos of fire from this source;




Amazing shots of Namdaemun before the fire from another site;




After the fire (Wikipedia);



And some old historical photo of the gate (Wikipedia);



p.s. I hope governments now will take better care of their historical sites, especially the wooden ones. I still have the visit to the wooden Kiyomizudera and Kinkakuji shrines of Kyoto in my list, and many more.

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+++ Check my travel photo sets at aibek_dunaev's Photo Sets on Flickriver

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